Courses & Fees
Cincinnati Montessori Secondary Teacher Education Program
- Registration fee $750.00 (due at time of application and includes AMS and MACTE fees)
- Course Program and Materials fee $7,750.00 which includes:
- Tuition for all 9 CMStep courses
- Reasonable expenses for intern site visits and consultation (1 visit during the Practicum year, 1 extensive video consultation in Winter of Practicum year, and a final visit the Fall of the school year that follows the final summer of the training program)
- Books and Materials (books and supplies are provided by CMStep with the exception of any books assigned to be read before the summer course begins)
- Room and Board for both Fall and Winter Intensives and the Erdkinder course
- Room and Board for the duration of the summer training (with the exception of the Erdkinder course, for which room and board are covered by CMStep)
- Graduate credit from Xavier University
CMStep is designed to meet the needs and busy schedules of full-time teachers. To complete the program in two summers, the summer 1 is four weeks of course work and a fifth week of field study/Erdkinder in June and July. This is followed by a year-long practicum, with two mid-year intensive seminars. The student works at a practicum site for a minimum six (6) hours a day, five (5) days a week for nine consecutive months (1080 Practicum hours required.) Students conduct a research project during the practicum year. Course work (Structure & Organization) and a final field study (Pedagogy of Place) are taken in the final summer. There are two visits in the practicum year and a final visit the following fall by CMStep staff.
If necessary, the program may be spread over three summers, rather than two. However, any exception to the program cycle is at the discretion of the Program Director and must be determined prior to the commencement of the program. Practicum may not precede the first summer academic phase of the program.
Secondary I-II COURSE DESCRIPTIONS
Summer 1 courses: Overview, Philosophy, Curriculum Development, Seminar, and Erdkinder
Practicum year: Practicum and Research
Summer 2 courses: Montessori Structure & Organization and Pedagogy of Place
1. Overview of Montessori Education
This course encompasses the basic principles and practices throughout the scope and sequence of the elementary curriculum within Montessori classrooms for ages 6-12. These principles will include an introduction to the concepts of sensitive periods and developmental stages, as well as the three modes of learning, the three period lesson, concrete to abstract, isolation of difficulty, point of interest, classification, and nomenclature cards used for early research. Presentations in each content area of Mathematics, Language Arts, Science, and Social Studies will demonstrate how the spiraling curriculum builds upon itself, sequencing into greater detail and focus. Teachers will have opportunities for hands-on practice with Montessori didactic materials with a special focus on those that are appropriate for the secondary classroom, and be expected to complete individual, paired, or group exercises in math and geometry, grammar, science classification, and timelines for history as well as Montessori’s Great Lessons. Cooperative group presentations will culminate the course.
Why this course? Because adolescents still need to occasionally see or work with materials to be reminded of their previous learning. Not only that, there are ways in which the materials can be used in very sophisticated ways to illustrate complicated concepts that are applicable to high school students!
2. Montessori Philosophy (and Adolescent Development)
Teachers in this course will read Montessori’s life, and discuss current trends and issues in Montessori education, adolescent development, and philosophy specifically as they apply to the education of the adolescent. An overview of adolescent development will emphasize developmental characteristics in the physical, psychological, social and moral/spiritual realms. Students will explore the writings of Montessori and discuss adaptations of these theories in light of current research and best practices. Participants will also be able to participate in experiential exercises in community building.
Why this course? It is important for all teachers to understand and be able to articulate the reasons they are teaching in a less traditional, more effective way, and how that connects to the development of the adolescent.
This course is designed to bring Maria Montessori’s Erdkinder Essay to life. In the course of this experience they form a strong community through seminars on stewardship and sustainability, shared work projects and activities that illustrate the cycle of life and death. A packing list will be provided upon registration. This is a physically challenging course, however, the ability and tolerance of each participant is respected.
Why this course? The web of life and the concept of interdependence permeate all of Montessori’s work. Every Montessori adolescent program has a land component and this course helps teachers learn how to engage students in caring for themselves, the school, and all living things. By giving a structure to help participants establish projects in their own schools.
4. Montessori Secondary Curriculum Development
This course will provide teachers with an overview of Montessori secondary classroom structure and organization, the structure for the development of a lively curriculum for the adolescent tailored to each individual school’s needs, and a model of the philosophy in action. In this course, the student will understand the basics in:
- creating a Montessori classroom environment
- developing student leadership and community
- developing integrated curricula with impressionistic lessons, Montessori materials, and projects
- uniting academic content within a theme that is appropriate to development of the adolescent
- implementing Socratic dialogue in all content areas
- designing meaningful kick-off and culminating experiences
- guiding student-led conferences
- making self-assessment opportunities for students
- facilitating and debriefing group initiatives
- managing large blocks of instructional time, designing a daily schedule
- teaming with colleagues
Why this course? Because finding ways to teach in a more dynamic and integrated way requires a curriculum that reflects those qualities. Participants in this course will develop their first Montessori plan of study on which future studies will be based. This course provides a foundation that integrates standards, Montessori philosophy, and site learning.
5. Paideia Seminar/Socratic Dialogue
The Paideia philosophy describes Socratic dialogue/seminar as a mode of teaching that is essential for helping students develop true critical thinking abilities. Participants will learn to routinely utilize the seminar approach to understand “great works” of literature, art, music, historical documents, and other writings in all subject areas. Students practice the process of seminar in the Montessori Philosophy and Methods courses by reading a variety of challenging pieces. They will learn to select appropriate pieces to use in seminar discussions, to organize and orchestrate seminars for success, and to scaffold questions to engage the students as well as actually participate in seminar discussions. Critical and creative thinking will be emphasized.
Why this course? Every person needs to learn to think for him or herself. This course helps teachers support their students to become active, engaged citizens who can discuss controversial topics with respect and dignity for themselves and others.
6. Pedagogy of Place
Pedagogy of Place gives teachers a chance to experience real field studies within their own disciplines. During this class, teachers learn to design their own Experiential Courses and integrate field studies with Socratic dialogue and service projects.
Why this course? We care about the things we understand. This course helps teachers design experiences that take the topics learned in class apply them to the world outside the classroom and to be stewards of the world all around them. This is one approach that really engages and excites students in the learning process.
7. Montessori Structure & Organization
In Structure & Organization participants spend each day of the week focused on one key aspect of the structure and organization of a Montessori secondary classroom. Participants develop materials that they will use in their classrooms in the next school year through a student centered class structure that emphasizes research, sharing, and Socratic dialogue. This course is an extension of Curriculum Development.
Why this course? Check Curriculum Development
8. Research/Independent Study – During Practicum Year
This course will focus on independent study in the form of a research project.
Why this course? Teachers need to demonstrate their own excitement and curiosity about learning, delve into their own questions about classroom practice, and be prepared to help students learn to do research as an aid to engaging the learning process.
9. Practicum Experience/Internship
Courses from Summer 1 are pre-requisites. Participants in the practicum receive two site visits, one video consultation, supervision in coaching, and attend the two weekend practicum intensives.